Monday 8 August 2016

More removals at Laverton

A quick visit today to see the state of play. The Saturday PWay gang have taken out all the remaining rail now, so that nothing more needs to be taken out to be replaced.

The two and a half remaining lengths over the bridge are out, as is the northern Laverton loop turnout. A bare bed remains; this needs to be filled with concrete sleepers and new rail.

The turnout is quite large, and its removal left this not inconsiderable gap.

The pile of sleepers was positioned there earlier, with precisely the purpose of filling this gap. Part of the first shipment of rails in September will go in here.

Looking north, you can see that the fresh ballast soon peters out, after which the temporary head shunt was laid on the bare trackbed. A first load of sleepers has already been removed from here and stacked nearby.

The length that needs relaying extends approximately to the bushes on the left. All the available second hand rail from Laverton has now been removed, with the final lengths taken up to Broadway by the contractor today.

Another day of sleeper removal is due to take place here, and then the process of rebuilding the headshunt can start. It will be done in three chunks, in order to avoid double handling of the sleepers - they will go out of the second third, straight back into the first, prepared beforehand, and so on. The area of the former northern turnout will also be graded to the correct height to accept the plain track sleepers.


  1. Stirling work. Awaiting September mow to s more new trackwork going in. Well done to all the workmen involved. Regards, Paul.

  2. I have to congratulate the staff of the GWR for the excellent work on the extension to Broadway - I have travelled on the existing section to Laverton and the ride quality was extremely impressive.

    There is one thing I am confused about - the original trackbed was designed for double track. You have reinstated a single track (understandable, on cost grounds), but the track you have rebuilt seems to change from side to side on the original trackbed. Surely it would make sense to keep the new track exclusively on one side (i.e. the northbound side) all the way from Toddington to Broadway, as this leaves the possibility of adding a second track at a later stage (if funds permit). With the existing track moving between sides, you would have to rebuild it to reinstate the second track, which would make the job much more difficult and would almost certainly require lengthy closures of the existing line. Why has the new track been constructed in this manner?

    1. Thank you for your comment, but can you please say who you are!

  3. We pick the best side to dodge the dodgier areas of embankment!

    1. Fair enough, but this does raise another concern - namely the state of the embankments. I know that you have had serious problems with embankments in the past (Chicken Curve), and I'm sure I speak for everyone when I say that you really do not need more problems with embankments.

      I presume you carefully studied the embankments before building the extension to Laverton (the quality of which I praised in my earlier post of 09/08/2016) - did you resolve any problems areas, or have you simply moved the track to avoid them?

  4. The pway guys certainly don't mess about when they get their teeth into something, a pretty good days work to get all that track up.
    In the head shunt there appears quite a noticeable dip in the track bed. Will that need to be graded with type 1 first before the Terram and ballast bed? I guess there's a cost involved with getting the tamper in, but when the head shunt is relayed and welded, will the lot be tamped? I was just thinking that the weight of trains on uneven track might stress the welds ? Is that even possible ?

  5. The trackbed does undulate a little, but it's not as bad as it might seem from the photograph.
    The new ballast bed will take care of any differences in height; we already did this for the rest of the bed right up to Peasebrook Farm. Worry not!